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USA Health System
News Release
Mobile, Ala. (December 12, 2008)
Contact: Paul Taylor , USA Medical Center, (251) 470-1682

Congressman Jo Bonner Tours USA Pathology Lab


Congressman Bonner and Dr. Carole W. Boudreaux

Congressman Bonner receives a demonstration of a state-of -the-art microscope, given by Dr. Carole W. Boudreaux, M.D. Associate Professor and Director of Cytopathology.

U.S. Rep. Jo Bonner, R-Ala., visited the pathology laboratory at the University of South Alabama Medical Center to experience firsthand the critical and expanding role laboratory testing plays in patient care. Bonner was given the tour by Dr. Allison Hunt, a senior pathology resident physician at the University of South Alabama.


The tour included a hands-on demonstration of how pathologists and cytotechnologists use leading-edge technology to screen for cervical cancer and precancerous lesions, highlighting the important role of pathologists in health care.


During the visit, Bonner discussed the need for final passage of the resolution that he co-sponsored (H.R. 1237/S. 2510), the Cytology Proficiency Improvement Act. This resolution, which has passed the House last April, asserts to amend the Public Health Service Act to provide revised standards for quality assurance in screening and evaluation of gynecologic cytology preparations, and for other purposes.

“The Cytology Proficiency Improvement Act will help bring the law up to speed with the improved technology and practices currently used in the field of pathology. I am a proud cosponsor of this legislation and sincerely appreciate Dr. Hunt and the University of South Alabama providing me this unique opportunity to tour the pathology laboratory,” said Rep. Bonner.
“Today’s tour outlined how the laboratory’s role is a vital component of patient care from diagnosis to treatment,” said Hunt. “Using state-of-the-art technology, pathologists look at individual cells, make a rapid diagnosis, and help guide therapy many times without any surgical intervention. We were honored that Representative Bonner took time out of his busy schedule to visit our laboratory.”
The Cytology Proficiency Improvement Act will replace the outdated 1992 federal Pap test proficiency testing (PT) regulation enacted under the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments of 1988 (CLIA ’88). The combination of national quality assurance standards, including work load limits and mandatory rescreening of Pap tests, as well as technological advancements, such as computer-assisted screening, location guided screening, and digital imaging, have rendered the current proficiency testing program obsolete. H.R. 1237/S. 2510 will replace the current regulation with a more rigorous continuing medical education testing program based on the complexity of modern laboratory practice. The Cytology Proficiency Improvement Act has the broad support of most national and state pathology organizations and the legislation unanimously passed the House of Representatives on April 8, 2008.
USA’s department of pathology, in addition to providing patient care, is actively involved in training medical students and resident physicians, and engaged in both basic and clinical research to improve the understanding of medicine.
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Date last changed: December 12, 2008 4:42 PM